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Suffolk Construction celebrates raising of Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum cupola

Topping off ceremony held on 238th Anniversary of Boston Tea Party.

December 27, 2011 |
Suffolk Construction Boston Tea Party

On the 238th anniversary of the original Boston Tea Party, Mark DiNapoli, President and General Manager of Suffolk Construction’s Northeast Region, joined officials from the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum to celebrate the raising and placement of the cupola on the roof of the museum structure. This milestone event marked the topping off of the $27 million, 18,700-sf project.

DiNapoli was joined by Shawn Ford, executive director and vice president of the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum; Chris Belland, CEO of Historic Tours of America; and Michael Cantalupa, senior vice president of development of Boston Properties. Following the topping off, period actors representing the patriots of 1773 threw replica tea crates into Boston Harbor as a reenactment of the actions 238 years ago.

The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum project was designed by Margulies Perruzzi Architects.

As construction manager, Suffolk is using state-of-the-art virtual models and collaboration tools to build this structure that will pay tribute to this seismic event in American history.

Building Information Modeling (BIM) helped the team coordinate the installation of extensive mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems throughout the project, which will consist of a two-story bridge house pier structure supported by 47 steel piles and a 350-ton, 200-foot floating barge.

The pier building will contain a retail store, two re-enactment meeting rooms, and offices. Three historic replica ships will surround the floating barge, which will house a museum on the first floor and a Tavern/Tea Room on the second level. More than 50% of construction will take place off barges on the water.

The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum will offer a unique museum experience for visitors. There will be interactive tours, actors dressed in period clothing, cutting edge exhibits, and living history programs that allow anyone at any age the chance to reenact history from 1773. Another special feature of the museum will be the display of the Robinson Tea Chest, one of only two known tea chests that still exist from the original Boston Tea Party event. BD+C

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